Jack & Jill went up the hill...on a golf cart!
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Villas Crossing is one of the Mid-Atlantic area courses that is introducing the "pay-to-play with amenities" style. Though your round costs money, you get to cruise around the mountains on wheels, which saves you a ton of energy! 1 round on foot here would be extremely tiring, whereas with cart, you could play 4 rounds! The Pro Shop offers a small selection of discs, but more importantly, food and beer! Both the food and beer selection are small, but it's a nice way to allow players to spend more time enjoying multiple rounds on the course. Concrete tee pads are in good shape with nice DISCatcher baskets on every hole. Elevation is the biggest asset of this course. From someone used to minor elevation in the course in the Philadelphia region, this redefined what I though elevation meant in disc golf.
Hole 1: slightly uphill open shot into a small grove of trees surrounding the basket.
Hole 2: massive par 4 signature hole featuring a scary drive that plays between dense brush and a large pine before opening up to a HUGE hill sloping downhill left to right. The basket is at the top of the hill, with a grove of trees around it and a fallen tree in front of it. Extremely hard to reach in 2 shots, as many people's 2nd shot turns into a rollaway downhill. Don't be upset with a 5.
Hole 3: Awesome elevation shot over 400 ft. and 5 or 6 stories down. I had never had the chance to see how discs behaved in elevation like that. Great learning experience, and great hole.
Hole 4: par 4, slightly uphill. One of the easier par 4's if you have decent distance. Some ppl play 2 big forehands with distance drivers. Others play a big turnover shot and a roller to get there in 2.
Hole 5: par 5, maybe the easiest hole on the course in relation to par. Big open drive slightly downhill. Can't get too greedy and overthrow or you'll turn into the tree line and have trouble. 2nd shot gets you to the opening of the woods, which shows a narrow tunnel 80 ft. further uphill to the basket. Easy 4 if you have clean power and nail your 3rd shot through the tunnel.
Hole 6: narrow uphill shot open at first, into a semi-tight gap leading to the hole. Birdie hole.
Hole 7: tight uphill short hole, either putter or midrange turnover. You can get in trouble if you kick off a tree, but otherwise another birdie hole ideally.
Hole 8: Smooth, midrange turnover hole with a tunnel early and lots of small trees dotting the end of the fairway. Very deuceable, but need to stay clean through the obstacles.
Hole 9: another signature hole, par 4, long straight tunnel. 2 controlled midrange shots with a little power is the way to go here. Fairway slopes right to left, so rollaways can happen on otherwise good shots. This is the biggest score separator hole. Birdie is there, but a 6 or 7 can come just as easily if you don't execute the drive and stay on fairway.
Hole 10: easiest hole on course, somewhat filler, but a nice gesture after hole 9. Short uphill hole with little in the way. Smooth midrange shot right at the basket. The uphill is the only obstacles that should come into play.
Hole 11: VERY similar to hole 8 - midrange turnover, play it the same as 8.
Hole 12: Blind shot through a wide tunnel that opens up with a large tree and bushes blocking the view of the pin. Big smooth fairway drive hyzer. Don't overthink it. Big slope left to right, so watch rollaways.
Hole 13: another signature hole. Drive need to thread thick brush on the left and tree/bushes on the right, then opens up to downhill approach to basket, which is on top of a really big mound. Smartest play is a careful midrange through the gap to eat up about 2/3 of the distance, followed by smart approach to bottom of mound. 2's can turn to 4's and 3's to 5's if you try to putt any further than 15 ft. Pro tip: there is also a hyzer line around the tree/bushes on right side of fairway off the tee.
Hole 14: slightly uphill and pretty open at first, but then heads into the woods with dense amount of trees. This is a hole to try and birdie, but you need a touch of luck to make it through.
Hole 15: another signature hole, massive par 4 downhill tunnel shot. Best advice: DO NOT throw a drive. Because the throw is so downhill, a putter or midrange that holds a really gentle turnover, or flips slowly and drifts right is what you want. It's been parked with a Roc before for drop-in eagle despite being 440 ft.
Hole 16: great open downhill hole, one of the toughest holes in relation to par. Though 500 ft. downhill, what makes the hole challenging is the OB golf green that comes into play between 430 and 480 ft., so it makes it nearly impossible to try to go for birdie. A midrange that lands just in front of the green is the smart play, leaving a 100 ft. approach. Be careful, as the basket is right on a ridge and drops off IMMEDIATELY. Lots of 4's carded on this hole.
Hole 17: another signature hole (I know, right?), and at 430 ft. almost straight down about 10 stories. This is another hole that taught me how discs behave with that kind of elevation. There are dense woods on the left, so you can't hyzer out too early. There is another OB golf green right in front of the basket, so you need to make it far enough or lay up intentionally short. There is a big net on the right "protecting" you from going into the road (OB), but be careful not to turn it over the net. I find an overstable mid-range flex shot works best.
Hole 18: par 5, maybe the 2nd easiest hole on the course. You really should get a 4 here. Big downhill drive into a wide open fairway. Big arms can go for eagle with a mash on their 2nd shot, but be careful not to straighten it out too much or you'll land on the OB golf green to the right of the basket.
Cons: The disc golf course intertwines with the front 9 of the ball golf course, so occasionally, you will need to communicate with golfers and figure out who's yielding to who. Thankfully, this isn't the type of disc golf on a ball golf course where every hole shares the golf fairway. So, it's really only holes 1, 2, 4, 5, 16, 17, and 18 that could compete with golfers trying to play as well. The only other con I can think of is that sometimes the golf carts can malfunction, but most of the times I've played, this hasn't been an issue.
Other Thoughts: I have a lot of nostalgia for this course, as it was the first time I've played disc golf on a golf course, and it's the first time I ever shot a 1000 rated round in a PDGA tournament. I love this place. The disc golf is immaculate. The staff is very friendly and enthusiastic about disc golf, and the region is absolutely beautiful. It is definitely worth the trip.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
A Hybrid Hybird
Pros: A Hybrid to a Hybrid course. A mix of both normal disc golf and hybrid disc golf in the same round. Easy flow between holes and wide enough fairways in the woods to drive the golf carts wherever you need to go. The course designer was smart and placed most of the baskets on the more open holes in tight spots so they are guarded when you get to them. Either by trees (holes 1,2,4,5) run away greens (holes 2,3,16,) or ball golf greens (holes 16 and 17) hole 13 also has an elevated basket. The tee boxes are all good in length and grip. The downhill bomber shots (holes 3, 16, 17,) are just plain fun. The views from the tee boxes on 4,16, and 17 are awesome. A great course for someone who has't tried hybrid disc golf to give it a shot. This course is the best permanent hybrid course I have ever played. I played the pro pars and felt like they were all fair for a upper 800s to low 900s player like me. The tee sighs on every hole pretty much showed you what you had to do I think the hole hole I drove up to find the basket was hole 12. Even on the open par 4s and 5s you still want to place shots to make your second and 3rd shots easier. I hope they leave the tree down by 2s baskets because I think it adds a little challenge to that upshot without making the shot unfair. The golf cart I had all be it an older gas powered one still worked just fine. The people that run the pro shop are really nice and they do sell a few discs there as well.
Cons: No practice basket. Some thorny stuff to crawl into to get a errant shot on some holes. 14's fairway could use a tree or two maybe taken out to give a little more of a lane to hit off the tee. It would't hurt to do the same with 5's 3rd shot into the woods. I love the drive on hole 17 but the OB netting is...... ugh. I get why they did it. But it's not like it's a major road. And if you going to do that then it needs to be strung the same all the way a crossed and it's not, it needs some repairs. The OB drop zone is also really dumb. Just play it like normal OB rules and take a drop from last inbound that drop zone is't even marked properly and is just unneeded either way. Either fix the netting and get rid of the DZ or get rid of the netting and just say road and beyond is OB and play for last inbound.
Other Thoughts: Get the cart. Trust me. I love a good hike as much as the next guy but this course will take forever walking it as some of the holes have long transitions by foot. Keep your eyes out for ball golfers and show respect. DON'T BE STUPID WITH THE CARTS! Represent the sport well to the ball golfers and maybe they will give it a try too!
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Decent signage, lots of elevation changes, some nice views, a few interesting holes, golf carts (if that's your thing), and a club house with a bar.
Cons: No place to warm up, some pretty thick briars along the course in spots, sharing the fairways with ball golfers, some repetitive holes, and golf carts (if that's not your thing).
Other Thoughts: I'm a bit surprised at how highly this course is rated. I'm glad I played the course, but it didn't have a wow factor for me. I'll probably play it again if I'm in the area, but I wouldn't go out of my way to play it.
Hole one starts the course with a lot of promise - a basket guarded by a ring of tall pines. I also enjoyed hole seventeen, even though it's a prime opportunity to lose a disc.
There are a few open, long holes. Once the course enters the woods, it's a bunch of short (200') holes - nothing too interesting or challenging. Just avoid hitting a tree to get par or nail the line to get the birdie. And there are a number of fairways with thick briars along the side.
Not sure I'm a fan of the golf carts. I hadn't played using a golf cart before, and while it speeds up the game, it made me feel a bit rushed. Plus, there were a number of spots where I thought I might roll the cart if I weren't careful!
In summary, not a bad course, but I wouldn't go out of my way to play it.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Cut the grass!!
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Very fun course. Well worth the cost to rip around on a cart. Great use of elevation. Bombing down 16 and 17 makes you want to play them again as soon as possible.
Cons: I've played here a bunch of times now and my only complaint is that there are too many places to lose your disc. I get that you cant clear out everything but they have got to clean up the bottom of some trees especialy between 4 and 5. I spent 30 min looking for my disc and still couldnt find it, just to lose another on 12. I would have loved to play another round but didnt want to lose any more. There is also alot of high grass around that makes it tough to find your lie when its in the open. My recomendation is you bring someone else to spot for you. I play mostly by myself so it will probably be awhile before i go back..
Other Thoughts: This is a must play course. Perfect to make a day trip out of it.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
I get to drive a cart WHERE?!?!
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Well designed wooded holes
The two consecutive "Top of the World" throws
Cons: A few of the longer bolf course holes are kinda boring (4, 5, 18)
Tee pads might be a little short for you run up guys
Other Thoughts: I played here when the course first opened and played it again today. The fairways are maturing nicely. Still a lot of thorn bushes out there in the rough, but less than the first time I was here. The amenities at Villas Crossing are top notch and the young lady behind the counter is always a joy to talk to.
Hole 1 is an uphill throw across an open field to a basket hiding under some huge pine trees (the christmas tree kind). This is one of the holes where I think the elevation change is somewhat deceptive, meaning it doesn't seem like it's as much uphill as it is and you're probably going to throw short the first time or two.
Hole 2 has a couple of possible routes, straight which is pretty tight and right where you have more room to work but if you turn your disc over you can land 3 fairways away (saw it happen today, dude landed on 18's fairway!). The basket is in the woods on the left up a steep hill with a large fallen tree crossing the front of the green several feet off the ground complicating matters even more.
Hole 3 is a doorway shot to an open downhill bomb with a few trees creating another doorway right before the green. The basket is perched on the edge of a drop off that will make long throws really long.
4 is two long straight throws and then a basket under a pine tree.
5... some long straight throws and then a basket tucked in the woods off to the left.
Hole 6 is where you leave the ball golf course and head off into the woods.
Hole 7 is an uphill straight/slightly annie shot. There's a leaning tree and an odd shaped tree up by the basket that like to get in the way.
Hole 8 is a big long annie through the woods. Staying in the fairway makes this shot a lot easier, but local routes can often get down to the green.
9. How long can you keep a disc flying perfectly straight through tight woods? This is one of those holes where you can find yourself crisscrossing the fairway from the rough on the right to the rough on the left and back to the right and so on until your scorecard starts to smolder.
Hole 10. Ace run!
Hole 11 is similar to hole 8 (annie) but longer (Leopard for me vs. Comet on 8).
Hole 12 begins with a tunnel and ends up in an open field.
13's elevated basket is reachable on a straight line or a hyzer bomb with a clump of trees sitting out there between both shots.
Hole 14 is wide open for probably the first 150' where you then have to pick your lane into the woods. The basket is perched upon a long snakelike mound of medium sized rocks. Trees are everywhere but there's room in-between for your disc to fly whatever type of line you choose to take to the basket.
Hole 15 is a downhill bomb along a dirt road down to a hanging basket.
Holes 16 and 17 are what the courses I played out west called a, "Top of the World" throw. You're bombing down the side of a mountain. Totally open save for the OB ball golf green (and the trees and road long on 17 playing OB). We had 22mph winds blowing in our faces on the tee box with gusts much higher than that making for some crazy shots here today!!
18 is kindof a bummer ending to an amazing course. It's 3 or 4 long straight throws with the same disc to a basket next to a ball golf green. I get that it brings you back to the clubhouse, but with a cart the course doesn't necessarily have to finish right behind the building.
Final Thoughts: I really enjoy playing Villas Crossing. After a lifetime of ball golf I absolutely love getting to take the cart off the manicured fairways and head into the woods! For the most part the course is really well designed, there are only 3 holes that simply follow the ball golf course and just seem long and boring with a disc, so much so that they are what's stopping me from giving Villas a 4.5 rating.
The wooded holes offer up quite a variety of challenges. Along with the requisite forehands and backhands I found myself using more overhand approaches than I ever need on other courses. A good long roller is probably a great shot to be able to lay down on this course, with the high winds today though, even ones that seemed like they were rolling in the right direction mostly ended up doing some crazy things. I think it says a lot about a course when it forces you to change your game or work outside of your comfort zone (I almost never throw hammers or rollers). I can't think of another course except maybe DeLa or Whistler's Bend that has as much elevation change to deal with as Villas (not sure I'd want to play here without a cart).
I would definitely put Villas Crossing on the wishlist in case you are ever in the area. It's certainly worth driving a few hours to play.
Final Final thought: If I lived closer I would absolutely buy a membership here and play this course all the time.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Great elevation changes.
-Baskets are perfectly nice and in good shape.
-Teepads were level and plenty big.
Great golf lines and great mix of up/down/flat left/right long/short tight/open.
-Awesome views. Just Awesome.
-Bar on site with plenty of craft beers on tap.
-Very friendly staff.
-Rough had a pretty good balance of not wanting to go in it, but also not death by a thousand thorns. Some places were rougher than others.
-Lines were all quite fair, but plenty of shots you still had to earn the bird.
Cons: -Wish there were more basket placements and tees.
-Would be a hell of a hike without a cart but that only comes into play during the winter months. Which really if you play during the PA snowy winters, I guess you don't mind putting in the effort.
Other Thoughts: This course really blows my mind. It is such a fun experience that is hard to find anywhere else in the disc golf world. I talked to the staff for awhile at the bar and heard they had plans for a second 18 that would have glow in mind during the construction, which would really make this a destination.
With multi teepads and basket placements this course would be a 5.
I mean it has a very unique feel to it as soon as you get there. Sign in at the proshop, pick your cart keys up, buy some beer for the cart and off you go. You zigzag up the mountain for some mostly open bigger holes and then you hit the trees and zig zag up to the top and then wind your way back down the mountain. The elevation is used so well here. That's my favorite aspect of the course honestly. I love the use of the slope side to side that is used on some of the longer holes. I came here at the peak of fall and played the course bright and early, which I totally recommend to anyone coming here. The views of Pennsylvania at the peak of fall are just gorgeous and you get to lay drives out while enjoying that and cold beers await you. Hard to beat that. Definitely worth going out of your way to come here and enjoy a round. Can't wait to see how the destination grows and changes.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Great as a Home course
Pros: Great mix of open fairways and technical holes through the woods.
Great tees and some cool baskets.
Signs very well-marked.
Fun downhill holes at the end (esp. 17 <3)
Cons: A tough walk.
Course not open into the winter even before snowfall.
Other Thoughts: For once I can be proud to live in Tamaqua, PA. This is the closest course to me and of the 6 I've played, this one takes the cake.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Look Out Below ... I mean, FORE!
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Golf carts - most everyone enjoys driving a golf cart, yes?
It is more a question of WHEN, not IF, a cart is going to flip over, and discs, golfers, beverages, and other assorted paraphernalia go tumbling down the hill.
The disc golf course is roughly evenly split between sharing the open ball golf fairways, and playing through the woods/hidden glade at the top of the ball golf course.
Disc golf holes 1-5 play along ball golf holes 3-6, so are fairly long and open, offering plenty of hucking opportunities, as they wind their way up the slope. Throwing from elevated tee-3 is probably the most fun shot found in this early group.
Holes 6-11 playing within the woods. Other than very long and very straight and very flat #9, these holes are shorter than the first five, offer a variety of shapes, with an emphasis on right turns, and have some minor elevation changes.
Hole 12-15 play into, along, out from a glade. Straight or left-turns from the tee will work on these middling-length holes. Elevated basket-13 presents an additional challenge,and some may suggest that the dense collections of trees mid/late fairway on 14-15 introduce a random element to the round.
Holes 16-17 play somewhat similarly. Open, as you're back on the ball golf course. Major drop in elevation, more so on #17. Baskets located a short distance away from ball golf greens, which are considered out-of-bounds. Basket-16 adds to the challenge as it is set on a ridge, with a steep drop behind it, and the extra "challenge" on #17 is to focus on the basket, and resist the temptation to toss your disc with all your might, to see if you can land on the house an additional ~500' in the background.
Hole-18 serves its purpose, aka brings you back to the clubhouse, but is an open huckfest.
Had fun playing with the Lancaster-area threesome I caught at hole-5, had fun playing solo, and the 2-to-1 ratio of discers-to-ballers seemed to be enjoying themselves, too. By all means, give the course a go if in the area.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Very Fun and Frustrating Course
Pros: Golf Carts!!!!!! Ok, Let's face it, how often as Disc Golfers do we get to drive around in a kart while playing. But in all honesty, the karts are very necessary because I could never imagine walking this course. Not having to carry a full bag on your back definitely helps with fatigue.
Ok, now to get serious. This course has a lot of variety. After playing two rounds, I don't recall once where I felt like a hole was getting redundant. Starting with a nice par 3 with the basket tucked into cove of trees, followed by a par 5 along a tree line and ball golf fairway, followed by a tee pad on top of a hill aiming through a cut out of trees throwing down hill across a ball golf fairway. And the hole course continues with this style of variety through out.
Great use of elevation on this course. There are ups and downs, but they do a pretty good job of making you not feel like you are throwing up an unacheivable hill. As gradually work your way up the hills, you get to enjoy the very fun drastic downhill. These are kind of fun as a player without a huge arm because you dread seeing a 500+' hole, but could possibly make par when you can actually throw a 400' tee shot or more. #17 is 432' and I took an extra tee shot to throw a putter and landed maybe 50' short. Fun feeling. This is the reason the carts are such a plus.
Scenery is also great. The course has some very nice views including #16 & #17 after coming out of the woods. Beautiful to overlook the country side from the side of a mountain, Right? PLus the course, being originally for ball golf, is extremely well maintained.
Cons: As someone who hasn't developed a great long game yet, there are some real bomber holes here. Now maybe that isn't a con for everyone, but it is for me. Tee off, pick up disc and throw it again, pick it up throw it again. Ok, I'm on my 4th shot, now maybe I have to think about what I'm doing. Especially since the longest ones are usually utilizing the ball golf fairways, so its open shots and just hucking.
Also I think some of the pars are very forgiving. They do have to par layouts, one for pro and one for AM, but still forgiving. For instance #15 AM is a par 5 at only 439' with a decent downhill. There is a pretty tight lane for just over half the hole, but even I threw a 4 my first round, and I was way in the trees on my tee shot.
Other Thoughts: This is a really good course and a course I get the impression will eventually be more about disc golf than ball golf. The staff at the clubhouse are super friendly. Definitely worth the hour and 15 minute drive for me to go check it out. I heard they are considering putting in another 18 holes on another part of the property... yes, please!!! This course should definitely be on and golfers agenda in this area.
Fun Retreat to the Villas
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: 18 concrete tees and single Discatcher basket positions. Nice tee signs and navigation is a breeze. I flew right through the course with the cart. This course has some huge elevation changes and scenic mountain views! Add in the golf cart, club house, beer, food, and you will have a blast playing here. The fairways were beautifully maintained....like a ball golf course.
This is not your typical disc golf course on a ball golf course, half the course overlays some the ball course and the other half plays through the woods on it's own separate parcel of land. This setup works very well to reduce playing conflict between disc and ball golf, as well as providing more wooded holes than your typical disc golf on ball golf course. The course transitions well with a variety of shots and distances from hole to hole. There's lots of interesting and unique holes here from a couple ace runs to a few long par 4's and a couple monster downhill bombers.
Cons: Much of these are not really cons, but perhaps beware. Only one loop back to the parking lot/club house, although this is not a big deal if you have a cart. If you hike the course without a cart, good luck. There's a decent chance to lose a disc or few if you struggle to control your plastic and there's some poison ivy in the rough. Also beware of flying golf balls. On hole 2 my approach shot to the green was on such a steep slope that when I pivoted I ended up falling onto my shoulder, this happened twice here. There were a few times I was concerned about rolling the cart. Hole 8 and 11 felt like deja vu, short hard right turning tunnel holes. I got harassed by some hornets around the basket of hole 15. I was hoping for a little wider fairway on 15 to be able to reach the basket from the tee. I noticed lots of people searching for discs behind basket 3, I believe they were playing that hole. Then on hole 16 I over flew the basket and landed behind basket 3 and was searching with the rest of the party, luckily I didn't hit anyone.
Hole 17 can be easily over shot and land on the road or onto the ball golf green of another hole which I did. The owner, George, nice guy, was driving by in his car and noticed my Comet on the green across the street, he picked it up and I yelled to him that was my disc and he tossed back and we chatted a little bit. He said I threw the second longest shot(about 750') he's seen, the furthest landed on the neighbors roof top. He said I either have a canon arm or a significant tailwind, actually I threw into a headwind.
I was charged the ball golf fee and then shown the tee 1 for the ball golf course, even after I said I was playing disc golf. I then teed off on hole 1 of the ball golf course a bit confused and searching for a basket that doesn't exist. Hole 1 of the disc golf course starts by hole 3 of the ball golf course. It looked to me like some longer or alternate tees and basket positions could be put in for more variety and challenge.
Other Thoughts: Overall Villas Crossing is one of the most fun disc golf experiences I've had. The course design is more geared to intermediate to advanced level, although most open level players will find a good enough challenge and a lot of fun. I'd highly recommend this course to any non-rank beginner looking for a fantastic day of disc golf.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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